Ultrasound Med Biol. 2020 Dec 18:S0301-5629(20)30473-7. doi: 10.1016/j.ultrasmedbio.2020.10.010. Online ahead of print.
The EkoSonic endovascular system has been cleared by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for the controlled and selective infusion of physician specified fluids, including thrombolytics, into the peripheral vasculature and the pulmonary arteries. The objective of this study was to explore whether this catheter technology could sustain cavitation nucleated by infused Definity, to support subsequent studies of ultrasound-mediated drug delivery to diseased arteries. The concentration and attenuation spectroscopy of Definity were assayed before and after infusion at 0.3, 2.0 and 4.0 mL/min through the EkoSonic catheter. PCI was used to map and quantify stable and inertial cavitation as a function of Definity concentration in a flow phantom mimicking the porcine femoral artery. The 2.0 mL/min infusion rate yielded the highest surviving Definity concentration and acoustic attenuation. Cavitation was sustained throughout each 15 ms ultrasound pulse, as well as throughout the 3 min infusion. These results demonstrate a potential pathway to use cavitation nucleation to promote drug delivery with the EkoSonic endovascular system.